Unusual Amusement Parks in California

California has an abundance of amusement parks, and here are a few that are unique in their offerings and that may appeal to you and your family when you are traveling on the West Coast of the United States.


Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk


This is one of the few remaining oceanside parks. It has three roller coasters including the vintage Giant Dipper from 1924. Their Casino Arcade and Neptune’s Kingdom have an amazing selection of video games, pinball, pool tables, Laser Tag, video arcade and redemption games, Air Hockey, a Shooting Gallery, and more.


Their Buccaneer Bay Mini Golf is an 18-hole and two-story pirate-themed course with a black light cave. From June 16 through September 1, featured will be two FREE Friday Night Bands on the Beach at 6:30 PM and 8:30 PM.


Gilroy Gardens theme park


This is unusual because it is devoted to horticulture. Among the features are the famous “circus trees,” living trees that were magically designed. In addition there are more than 40 rides and exhibits added to their six majestic gardens that are located throughout the park. The rides are geared mostly to younger children and include a Ferris Wheel, Mushroom Swing, a railroad, and a Quicksilver Express Mine Coaster that has the theme of a local abandoned mine.


Children’s Fairyland in Oakland


This is a small lakeside park but is a treasure especially to those children who are under age eight and love the fables and rhymes of childhood. There are almost 60 storybook sets, friendly live animals, 10 acres of gardens, and child-size rides such as a train, a Ferris wheel, and a small carousel.


Castle Park in Riverside


This family entertainment center has four mini-golf courses, an arcade, games, and more. A small amusement park has rides including a Ghost Blasters interactive dark ride, a spinning roller coaster, a log flume, and a drop tower ride.